Search Menu provides actual and valid information on:

  • how to obtain fishing rod licences
  • how to obtain fishing permits
  • local fishing regulations and
  • where to fish

in selected European countries, for example:




UKEnglandWalesNorthern IrelandScotland

Fishing rod licence

In most of the European countries obtaining a valid fishing rod licence is a prerequisite to go fishing. Often you need an additional permit to actually fish in a particular fishery. Obtaining a fishing rod licence can be time consuming in some countries or regions and often requires local knowledge.

Especially if you are on holidays abroad it´s vital to prepare things before you go. You might find that for some destinations knowledge of native language is necessary to obtain a valid fishing rod licence and/or permit.

How to obtain a fishing rod licence?

Obtaining a licence or permit can be pretty straight forward in some countries like England and France, but also cumbersome like in certain regions of Spain (e.g. Andalucia). Only since a couple of years it is possible to obtain a temporary fishing rod licence in Germany without passing an exam beforehand.

You will find valuable information on how to obtain a fishing rod licence in selected European countries here on!

Structure of the pages on

Pages on this websites are structured in sections.

  • Section 1. “Fishing rod licence” provides information whether a fishing rod licence is needed or not and information on the type of available licenses. Section 3. “Additional fishing permit” is organised similarly.
  • Practical information for a given country can be found in;
    • Section 2.How to obtain a fishing rod licence?” and
    • Section 5. “Where to fish?”. In the latter section you will find useful links that help you to organise your fishing trip abroad.
  • There is also always a legal section called “(Local) fishing regulations” that provides useful links and information on fishing rights and duties.

Additional fishing permit

Often you need an additional permit from a local authority or a property owner or an angling club to actually fish in a particular fishery. This is important because, if you fish without a permit and/or license you can be fined.


For example in the UK you can be fined up to £2,500 (GBP) for fishing without a rod licence. In Germany you can be fined up to 22.500,- € and in France you can be fined up to 22.500,- € (see here) for fishing without a rod licence or breaking the fishing regulations. Furthermore, by braking the German fishing regulations you are risking up to 2 years of imprisonment.

Local fishing regulations

Additionally, it is important to know the local fishing regulations. For a given species fishing seasons vary even between different regions within one country, depending on local byelaws. In general you should be informed about the local fishing regulations in the region where you want to fish. It is important to check:

  • the area(s) in your region where you are allowed to fish
  • closed seasons (when you can’t fish), which might depend upon particular types of water and fish
  • the sort of tackle (rod and bait) you can use for certain fish at certain times in the year
  • the size of certain fish you can keep (or must release immediately)

Some fish can be caught throughout the year, whereas others have a closed season or have to be released immediately after being caught. Closed seasons may also have effects on which type of bait is forbidden at which time of the year. For example in the UK and the Netherlands some waters only allow “catch and release. In the UK some waters can only be fished with barbless hooks and anglers are advised to carry and use an unhooking mat and fishing nets whilst fishing.

Legal advice is not intended to be a source of legal advice. Postings to this website have been prepared for informational purposes only.

The content of this website is purely informational and therefore neither the website nor the owner is responsible for any errors, changes or omissions.